28 June 2005

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity!

Went to Diepkloof in Soweto last Monday to watch a documentary by Naomi Klien- she is a world renowned social activist who made ‘The Take’, a political thriller, with another socialist, Avi Lewis. The doc was on Argentina- a few years ago the economy collapsed- an economy that was really doing well and at that time, was understood to be a prime example of how capitalism should work.
The collapse was shocking; the country had 5 different presidents in a matter of weeks and the banks also collapsed after a massive run on them. The local currency, the peso, was pegged to the US dollar and when the rich foresaw trouble, the changed all their peso’s to off shore dollars, packed up and left when the shit hit the fan. These included many factory owners who deserted their factories and left their workers in the lurch- the doc shows how the workers took over the factories and started working for themselves.
It shows how they struggled and managed to get things going, only to be served eviction notices once things were back on track, the economy was again picking up and those of the mass exodus began returning. The workers fought to retain what they thought was rightfully theirs- some won and others lost- another example of the inequalities and injustices of many of the worlds economies…
Naomi and Avi have made it their personal mission to show the world what’s really going on in Argentina and elsewhere in the world- admirable ambitions that should encourage us to have some greater goal in life than the mere amassment of wealth!

Tues saw another meeting with Jamiat in order to mesh relations between ‘the Ulema’ and ‘professionals’… Noble intentions, I dare say, and there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel:)
The meeting resulted in a planned excursion to an Uloom for university students(“,), as well as the proposed creation of a ‘think-tank’ for Muslims comprising of ‘superior minds’ from both groups- forward your applications if you would like to get involved!

On a less ‘Halaalish’ note, I would like to propose Layer Cake as an excellent form of entertainment: by the makers of Snatch and Lock, Stock; a very entertaining show! But of course, movies are a waste of valuable time and we shouldn’t be going anyways… Do you dare to disagree?

I’ve experienced another bit of Joburger hospitality- my car was almost stolen during Jumah last Friday! Yes, some imbeciles ravaged ‘the mighty one’ and even had the audacity to do so in broad day light! Luckily they couldn’t get away with it, who knows, they probably wouldn’t have gotten very far anyways;p Left more damage than anything- broken door lock, steering lock and gear lock! I’m a big fan of wealth redistribution, but this really pissed me off! Consoling point for the day was positive board results, so I pray thanks and carry on…

Danny Schecther, a media dissector from the States, was at Museum Africa on Saturday. He is a full-time critic of conventional media and goes the extra mile to offer an alternative source of news- google him and I’m sure you will be appropriately informed. He covered the way the media covered the war on Iraq, and nicely shows how the world public was mislead with an orchestrated and studio produced version of the news!
Weapons of Mass Deception, is an informative piece that humorously educates and informs- look out for a screening at a Friday Nite session in the near future…
Speaking to Danny, we asked what it was that made him commit his life to educate and inform the largely government and multi-national mislead public- his response, and a lesson for us Muslims, was that it feels good and that it’s the right thing to do! Now, as Muslims, we are obliged to fight against injustice, oppression, inequalities and even deception! Here we have, in the likes of Danny, Naomi, Avi and many others, faithless based social activism, and without taking anything away from their good works, I believe that it’s the duty of Muslims to be trying to accomplish what these people are…

So with similar ambitions, we went to Mamelodi on Sunday for a blanket distribution. Over 500 blankets needed to be distributed to this less fortunate community, by a bunch of university students from Joburg and Pretoria. At first I was convinced that a riot or stampede was most likely to ensue, but somehow the bunch of inexperienced academia, managed to pull off a pretty controlled distribution. Almost seemed like a big Indian-run business: the way things played out, if you stood on the sidelines it was not difficult to notice similarities between how things were handled during the distribution and the way Indian business is run...
More than just giving handouts, which is definitely appreciated by the poor during the miserable Gauteng winter, the distribution was about interacting with and trying to understand what these people have to go through… As someone aptly said, all those blankets, the warming up of almost an entire location, would otherwise normally just be the sound in some ‘clevers’ posh set of wheels!

Last but not least, Moz plans are well under way- Moz, here we come:)
And after 6 months of these appalling emails, I am happy to say that they may have to come to an end!

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